There is a widely held view that older people lack the drive necessary to become successful entrepreneurs. Certainly in certain sectors, like technology, the perception is that to be successful you need to have achieved your business ambitions by the age of thirty-five years, otherwise in entrepreneurial terms you are deemed ‘over-the-hill.’ It is therefore refreshing to learn that figures from recent studies in the US and elsewhere suggest that older people do have the required business and technical skills, combined with experience, to start-up businesses, and become more successful on average than younger people.
Adeo Rossi,founder of the The Founder Institute, says age is only one factor among many to predict the success of an entrepreneur.The romanticised notion that it is the young college drop-out who will be the one to make good and become a millionaire is wide-off the mark, far from the norm.According to the Ewing Marion Kaufman Foundation, business creation by older Americans grew by more than 60 per cent between 1996 and 2012, fuelled partly by ageing and the huge boomer generation. In the UK, the number of self-employed workers increased by 9.6 per cent in the four years between 2008 and 2012 to 4.176 million and older people made a significant contribution to this growth. Alastair Clegg of the Prince’s Initiative for Mature Enterprise (PRIME) also adds,” that older people have a wealth of skills and experience that are not only beneficial to the economy but will help the next generation of workers.”He says that for older people struggling to find work, starting-up their own business is a viable route to a sustainable employment.
It is never too late to be your own boss as an entrepreneur.
At ageUK you can read about Geoff Gill,65 years of age,and recently retired, who decided to retire from his employment and turn a part time business interest into a full time one. He is one of many who has decided to continue to be gainfully employed but as his own boss.In this way he is able to use his skills and experience in a sustainable business.
There are many people out there like Geoff to inspire us.For useful information have a look, for example, at what PRIME has to offer.